Posts Tagged ‘patchwork pieces’

Saturday’s Simple Recipe Page 13 Lemon Meringue Pie

October 20, 2015

Yes, I realize it is Tuesday instead of Saturday. Once again, on Saturday I was in College Station at the Texas A & M game with my husband and Todd’s family. It was great being with them, but our game against Alabama wasn’t so great.

Before I wrote my blog this week I wanted to have my Strings Block Swap Quilt complete. Seven of us who work in the Education Department at Fall Quilt Festival exchanged string-pieced quilt blocks. Our quilts will hang in the Education office, 340AB, at the George R. Brown Convention Center during Fall Quilt Festival.  Barbara Black, who takes care of registering our teachers at the shows, coordinated our swap. We received all our instructions and deadlines from her. You can find great instructions for this, if you go to her blog. Thank you, Barbara.

I received 36 blocks of red and white strips from six participants. In return I sent six blocks to each of the ladies following their requests for certain colors. I decided I wanted red and white blocks, after seeing the monumental Ruby Jubilee quilt exhibit at last fall’s show. As my blocks came in, I was also receiving many pints of blood and platelets because of my MDS.  The blocks took on a new meaning I hadn’t anticipated as I auditioned them on my design wall. Hence the name for my quilt is “Transfusions.”

transfusions

Transfusions 46″ X 46″

The border is made from some sentiments from cards, emails, letters, and Facebook comments I’ve received over the last several months. I cut and pasted them to sheets of paper and then photo copied the results on fabric. Creating those sections was not unlike doing one of my many scrapbook/memory pages.

corner

Top Left Corner

I machine quilted the small piece. Many years ago, I thought I wanted to learn how to perfect quilting by machine so it was as wonderful as a hand quilted quilt. That went by the wayside after a few years of trying and realizing the tediousness of pulling threads though and quilting without feed dogs. Hopefully, the magnificent machine quilting teachers we have on staff will forgive me for not spending the time to do it right.

Tomorrow I will move into the Hilton as my home away from home for 13 days. For many years I have stayed in the Four Seasons near the George R. Brown Convention Center. I have loved that hotel and have come to know the management and my junior suite. I will miss it. Hopefully, my room at the Hilton will be just as satisfying. I need to be near the Convention Center so I can easily go back to my room to rest, when necessary. The Hilton connects to the GRB. So I won’t be cooking for two weeks, but I know many of you will.

When we married in 1966, every bride received “Betty Crocker’s New Picture Cook Book” as a wedding gift.

book

Betty Crocker Cook Book

Just about anything I wanted to know was in that cookbook, but I used “Dinners for Two” most often. I still use both cook books.

dinners

Dinners for Two

Suzanne, my sister, and I discovered in the Betty Crocker’s New Picture Cookbook a better recipe for Lemon Pie than she had used for decades. So starting in 2012, we both started using the recipe.

Lemon Meringue Pie

Make baked pie shell

For 9″ Pie

1 1/2 cups sugar

1/3 cup cornstarch

1 1/2 cups water

3 egg yolks, slightly beaten (Save the whites for the meringue.)

3 tbsp. butter

2 tbsp. grated lemon rind

1/4 cup lemon juice

Use a whisk to stir.

Mix sugar and cornstarch in saucepan. gradually stir in water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Boil 1 minute. Slowly stir in egg yolks beating all the time. Boil 1 minute longer, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat. Continue stirring until smooth. Blend in butter, lemon juice and rind. Pour into baked pie shell. Cover with Meringue. Bake. Serve as soon as cool. Do not refrigerate.

I still have a garment to finish, packing to do, laundry, and bills to pay before I leave the house tomorrow morning so I’d best get on with it. Just wanted to say good-bye and Happy Autumn. I know a lot of you are experiencing even cold weather and gorgeous fall foliage now. We are just happy to have our temperatures drop into the 70’s and 80’s. In our household we say, “It’s a California kinda day.” Enjoy your late October wherever you are. You know where I’ll be. Hope to see you, too. Hugs, Judy

autumn

Happy Autumn

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Play Date #11 The Stockings Were Hung

October 6, 2014

by the chimney with care in hopes that St. Nicolas soon would be there.

Family Stockings

Family Stockings

“Use it up. Wear it out. Make it do. Or do without.” is a quote I grew-up with in the 50’s. Being the fourth born of five children, I knew what hand-me-downs, cleaning your plate, share with your brother, etc. meant. Therefore, it’s easy to realize the origin of my game of using every little scrap of fabric, taking what someone else has discarded, and making it into something desirable. For Play Date #11, come along with me to make a one-of-a-kind Christmas stocking.

To create a stocking foundation on which to embellish, you can do one of three things:

  • Cut a stocking from an old damaged quilt. You may need to piece sections together to get a piece large enough for your stocking size.
  • Use a quilt top and add batting to the wrong side of the top before embellishing it.
  • Piece fabric scraps onto batting that has been cut into a stocking shape.

The stocking I’m showing you here was made from pieces of a vintage quilt. The ten stockings pictured below were made from the same quilt.

Multiple Stockings from Same Quilt

Stockings from One Quilt

Santa won’t be able to resist filling these vintage-looking stockings. They are fun to make in different sizes and shapes and easier than they look. A unique construction method makes them a cinch to line, sew and turn.

Finished Stocking Measures 7" Across top and 17" tall.

Finished Stocking Measures 7″ across top and 17″ tall.

Materials

  • Backing and lining for stocking, 1/2 yard for a stocking approximately 8″ X 18″, much less for small or tiny stockings
  • Assorted small pieces of trim, lace and ribbon
  • Jingle bells and other Christmas trinkets
  • Photo transfer and quote transferred to fabric
  • Vintage quilt or quilt pieces
  • Stocking pattern of choice

Instructions for Stocking front

  1. Piece together vintage quilt scraps or use a piece from a damaged quilt. My sister gave me these scraps she had left-over from one of her projects.
    Scraps from a Vintage Quilt

    Scraps from a Vintage Quilt

    I pieced them together and ironed the piece flat.

    Scraps Pieced and Ironed

    Scraps Pieced and Ironed

  2. Cut stocking pattern from quilt piece.
    Cut Stocking

    Cut Stocking

    There are stocking  patterns to be found on the internet. Or, you may have one in your pattern collection. You could use my pattern pictured here. It is possible to use a copy machine to enlarge or reduce the size of your pattern to get an assortment of sizes.

    Stocking Patterns

    Stocking Patterns in Various Sizes

  3. Embellish seam lines with lace, ribbons, and trims. Sew trims in place by machine whenever possible. Some will require stitching along both edges and others through the center only. If there is a row of visible stitching in the trim design, try to stitch on top of it with matching thread for the most invisible application.

    Embellish Stocking

    Embellish Stocking

  4. Embellish the stocking to your heart’s content.

    More Embellishing

    More Embellishing

Magic Lining

  1. Cut 2 pieces of lining fabric, right sides together, the same shape as the pieced stocking, but 1″ longer at the opening edge. Choose this fabric carefully as it will show at the top edge on the outside of the finished stocking.
  2. Place the finished stocking front face down on top of the backing fabric (the back side of the stocking) and cut the backing piece.

    Cut 2 Lining and 1 Backing Fabric

    Cut 2 Lining and 1 Backing Fabric

  3. Layer the 4 pieces in the following order and pin together:
  • Patchwork stocking, right side up.
  • Backing, face down on right side of stocking
  • Two lining pieces right sides together on top of backing.

4. The two lining pieces will extend above the stocking. Stitch 3/8″ from the raw edges through all layers, leaving the top edge unstitched.

Layers together

Stitch 4 Layers Together

Clip the curves to the stitches being careful not to cut the stitches.

5. Turn the backing piece over the stocking so the backing is on the outside and lining is inside. Use a long, blunt tipped tool to push out the edges for a smooth, rounded finish.

6. Turn the lining down over the top edge of the stocking and turn under at the raw edge. Tuck decorative piping, lace or ribbon under the turned edge, if desired.

Turn Lining to Front

Lining over top

Edge stitch along the fold through all layers using a decorative stitch, if desired. A free-arm sewing machine makes easy work of this on the larger stocking. The smaller stocking you will need to stitch by hand. Press carefully.

7. Attach 4″ to 6″ long piece of trim or ribbon to the top corner edge for hanging. Hot glue or stitch any additional embellishments to the stocking front until you are pleased. Isn’t it darling?

These stockings are so much fun to make! Once you’ve made some for yourself, you’ll want to make them for everyone on your gift list this year. The tiny ones are precious on packages and the medium size ones make great hostess gifts. I’ve used them as place cards for dinner parties with the guests’ names peeking out of the stocking. Your guests will be so delighted when you tell them to take their stockings home.

Tiny Stocking

Tiny Stocking

2" Across Top and 5" Tall

2″ Across Top and 5″ Tall

Tiny

Great on a Gift Package

 

Check-out my etsy site for more ideas. Go to judymurrahdesigns.etsy.com.

Merry Christmas everyone from the Christmas Angel. Love, Judy

 

Play Date #8 Just A Little Purse or Notions Bag

September 17, 2013

Here’s a great way to use up leftovers from patchwork projects. Make a small purse or a notions bag large enough for the bare necessities. You decide how large you want the finished bag, depending on your needs and the available materials. Here we go!    

Purses & Notions Bags

Purses & Notions Bags

Materials

Small leftovers from other projects, including patchwork pieces, threads, beads, fabrics, and trims

Soft, dyed leather strip, rat-tail cording, or braided cord of the desired length for a shoulder strap, 45″ usually works well

Polyester or cotton batting for bag foundation

Lining and pocket fabric

Zipper, at least 1″ longer than the cut measurement of the purse opening

Materials Needed

Materials Needed

Directions

Decide on the desired finished size of your bag. The examples shown here range in size from approximately 5″ X 8″ to 9″ X 12″. Cut a piece of foundation batting of the desired width, plus side seam allowances, and twice as long as the desired finished length, plus 1/2″. Often a scrap of batting left over from some other project dictates the size of the purse I make. Each one is always a nice surprise.

Foundation Measurements

Foundation Measurements

Use your leftovers to cover the foundation in a pleasing arrangement. Stitch and Flip patchwork and leftover fabrics to the foundation. Use buttons, beads, and decorative threads to add whimsy, if you choose.

Cover the Foundation

Cover the Foundation

After the patchwork piece is completed, cut a piece of lining to match the finished size. Stitch a pocket at least 1 1/2″ from the top of the lining. Set aside.

Add a Pocket to Lining

Add a Pocket to Lining

Pin the zipper to one edge of the patchwork, with right sides together and zipper closed. Align the raw edge of the fabric with the edge of the zipper tape. Using a zipper foot, stitch 1/4″ from the edge of the zipper tape. The ends of the zipper may extend beyond the patchwork piece as long as it’s at least 1″.

Stitch 1/4" from Edge

Stitch 1/4″ from Edge

Repeat the above step at the opposite end of the patchwork.

Zipper Sewn to Patchwork

Zipper Sewn to Patchwork

Unzip the zipper. Pin the lining to the patchwork, right sides together, with the zipper sandwiched between the two layers of fabric. Working from the wrong side of the patchwork, stitch on top of previous zipper stitching.

 Lining to Zipper

Lining to Zipper

Partially close the zipper. Pull the lining away from the patchwork. If you are making a purse, place the cording inside the patchwork side. Pull 1/2″ of the cord out to the edge of the patchwork, close to the zipper. Pin in place. Pin the side seams of the patchwork together and the side seams of the lining together. Except for the 1/2″ of cording showing, the rest should be inside the bag. Turn the zipper teeth toward the patchwork. Stitch 1/4″ from all raw edges, leaving a 4″ long opening on one side of the lining for turning. Be sure to backstitch carefully over the zipper teeth at both ends. Cut off ends of zipper if they extend beyond the seam edges.

Stitch Raw Edges

Stitch Raw Edges

Turn the purse right side out through the lining opening. Pull gently on the cording. Turn in the seam allowance at the lining and stitch closed by machine.

Stitch Opening Closed

Stitch Opening Closed

Push lining inside purse. On outside, push in the lower corners to shape box corners. Pin in place. Turn bag inside out and stitch across the corner 1″ from the point, stitching through the lining and the purse layers. Turn right side out.

Stitch Across Corners

Stitch Across Corners

This created a bottom to your purse or bag.

Bottom of Bag

Bottom of Bag

Inside Bag

Inside Bag

9" X 11" Finished

9″ X 11″ Finished

Now wasn’t that easy? Try another one. It will go much quicker and will be easier than the first one.

Measures 4" X 9"

Measures 4″ X 9″

To make this process even quicker and easier check out my etsy shop for kits with directions ready to go. I’m having lots of fun creating  different sizes and different looks. They just need to be stitched together.

Blue Kit

Blue Kit

Would love to see what YOU create. Have fun. Send pictures.

Love and Stitches, Judy

Create…bring into being

August 29, 2013

This past week has been a fun week of creating in my studio with my sister Suzanne. Each summer, she visits me for an extended week-end, and we have a sew-athon. With the exception of Sunday, we avoided putting on nice clothes and make-up or fixing an elaborate meal. We were fortunate to have my husband who most nights ran to the grocery store, fixed a yummy dinner or  brought dinner home.

One night, Suzanne’s daughter brought dinner to us. She knew we wouldn’t be all “dolled-up” and told us so. She reminded us of the sewing marathons we had at our family lake house when she was in elementary school, and I was in college. She called us “sea hags” then, and she wasn’t expecting much more than that the night she came over. We had a laugh over that. Some things just don’t change.

My Sister Suzanne

My Sister Suzanne

Suzanne spent our time together getting many projects ready for her booth, “Apples of Gold”,  at Quilt Festival/Houston. She cut pumpkin wedges from dyed cutter quilts and stitched a few together. We have been making these pumpkins for at least 10 years, and they are still popular among her customers. Suzanne has made hundreds of them. Being the big sister (actually she’s much smaller than I am) she of course knows how to make the best pumpkins. She told me I wasn’t using the correct color of dye or strong enough solution on my cutter quilts. Being the “little sister,” I took it all to heart and, after a day at the office on the day she left, I dyed my quilt scraps in my jammies. It’s important to make my big sister proud.

Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble

Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble

Yesterday, I cut and sewed patchwork pumpkins from those “dyed-again” cutter quilt scraps. I put one in my etsy shop, but there will be more to come in six different sizes and from different quilts. They are so much fun to make and decorate. They take a little more time and effort  than the pumpkins cut in a circle that I showed you in our last Play Date #7.

Dyed Patchwork Pumpkin

Dyed Patchwork Pumpkin

Each time Suzanne comes for a visit or I see her in San Antonio she gives me linens, fabrics, laces, and trinkets she has cleaned-out from her collections. I never turn down any of it,  because it’s very possible I will use it and often I do. I just keep adding it to another cupboard, drawer, or closet. I told her I hope I have an opportunity to give-away all my collections before my children have to deal with it. My three granddaughters would take a lot of it home with them now, but I know their mommies wouldn’t be happy about it. Oh, well I accepted another full bag of goodies. My husband had to carry it upstairs it was so heavy.

Another bag of goodies

Another bag of goodies

Suzanne isn’t the only one who cleans out her closets and brings me what she wants to get rid of, but aren’t I the lucky girl? My good friend Teresa brings me boxes and bags of fabulous sewing supplies. It’s like Christmas. The latest batch of discards was all kinds of ribbons and trims. I love them and had a great time stroking them as I sorted them and wound them on cards for neatness.

I love ribbons and trims

I love ribbons and trims

I’ve read recently that you are not a hoarder if your collections are organized. Just want to show you proof that I’m not a hoarder, as each of my ribbons and trims are categorized and labeled in boxes. I do need to add some larger boxes, however.

Ribbon and trim closet

Ribbons and trims closet

My friend Sheryl also gives me decorator fabrics and heavy trims that are left from her very successful custom drapery and bedspread business. Do you think these friends feel sorry for me, or are they glad someone will take the excess off their hands? Sheryl sent me a box of goodies recently, and I was able to coordinate them to make large tote bags. I have put four of them in my etsy shop recently. Sheryl chose some of her left-over fabric for a tote for her and gave it to me in Long Beach. I’ll make it and give it to her when I see her again in Houston. She comes to our Festivals and is a great worker on our Education Team.

Grey/silver combination

Grey/silver combination from Sheryl

And ta-da, here’s a tote from Sheryl’s scraps. “Waste Not, Want Not” my mom always said. Maybe she shouldn’t have taught me that mantra. I do live by it. Oh, dear.

And here it is.

And here it is.

While Suzanne was here for her visit, I finished that tote plus a couple of others and fall table runners and toppers that are in my etsy shop or will be for sale at our church’s Festival on November 9th. I’ll share a booth with my dear friend Joan Hill, and I hope it’s full to the brim and that we get lots of shoppers.

I do love to create and am reminded often of it’s importance by my friend and mentor, Lesley Riley. She will be teaching and coordinating some Artist Development classes at Fall Quilt Festival/Houston  that I highly recommend. Check out her blog for lots of inspiration. Her recent post, “Did You Forget Where to Look?” on August 26 hit home with me. This paragraph in particular was another one of those a-ha moments.

“I am again on a search for myself! Yet, as many times as I’ve found myself, I seem to always forget where to look. Why do I go seeking elsewhere when the very thing I desire can only come from my heart, my soul, my hands?”

When I get it right, I feel like my granddaughter Madison who has no problem finding her true self. She has created from her heart since the day she could move and talk, and has let that creative energy flow and take flight at any time all her 16 years. Love your creative spirit, Little MEM.

Myself

Myself

Another place I look for inspiration when I know I need to create with my hands is my most favorite magazine in the whole world, “Where Women Create.” Jo Packham, another mentor and dear friend is the Creator and Editor-in-Chief of this quarterly of inspiring work spaces of extraordinary women. Jo will also be teaching at Fall Quilt Market and Quilt Festival. Check out both schedules on the Quilts website.

This issue was given to me in a welcome basket from our sales person in Long Beach. Even he knows it’s my favorite magazine. I was so delighted I would have it to study on the flight home.

When I got back to the office I had another copy of this issue from Jo. So, now I have two. One has lots of writing in it, and the other one is pristine. Would you like to have a chance to win it? All you have to do is answer this question at the end of this post where it says “Leave a reply” and “Enter your comments here.” “Where do you get your inspiration to create?” I’ll randomly choose a winner on Tuesday after Labor Day. 

My most favorite magazine

My most favorite magazine

I devour this magazine from cover to cover and have since the very first issue. I literally read every single word. On the inside cover, I write page numbers I want to refer back to. Often I have underlined or starred parts on those pages. Page 91 was so important to me that I wrote the number on her skirt on the cover of the magazine so not to miss it.

Important Page Numbers

Important Page Numbers

So what was so important on page 91 of the August, September, October 2013 issue? It was a tip from Jessica Swift, a painter, surface pattern designer, and author from Portland, Oregon. I’ll leave you with her words.

“Follow your intuition wherever it takes you, even if it’s scary or feels confusing. Listen closely to your inner voice because it’s pointing you in the exact direction that you need to go. You never need to listen to what someone else is telling you you’re “supposed to” do. The answers you need are already within you. Get quiet, listen, and then act accordingly!”

Until we meet again, I wish you lots of “bringing into being.” Judy

Clean Closets Campaign

May 31, 2012

Hello everyone,

Sorry for the long absence. Life and work sometime take precedence over chatting. I’ve missed you.

Most recently I have been to Kansas City for the International Spring Quilt Market. To get a great idea of the trends you will soon see in your fabric and quilt shops go to Pokey Bolton’s blog. She reported extensively in two different posts on Spring Quilt Market and what we saw there.

Quilt market

Kansas City Quilt Market

Quilt Market is for the trade only so as one of the show organizers I am not eligible to buy other than at the wild and crazy Thursday night Sample Spree. Among other things I bought great bundles of fabric from different manufacturers with designers such as Joel Dewberry, Amy Butler, Laura Gunn, and Kaffe Fassett. The colors are so bright and so happy I couldn’t go home without a bag of new treats. Now the problem is where to put all these new treats. Right now they are just stacked on my over burdened cutting table.

fabric

Fabric Bundles Purchased at Sample Spree

For weeks my upstairs has been in disarray as I’ve been trying to clean out six closets that house all of my “stuff.” Three of the six closets are in pretty good form. I can get in there and find what I need, but the other three have become a mess and a chore to find what I want. I need to get rid of some of my sewing and crafting supplies, but it’s so hard to do.

book closet

Book and Ephemera Closet

fabric closet

Fabric Closet

studio closet

Studio Closet with some boxes removed

beads closet

Beads and Buttons Closet

After buying and hoarding and teaching and designing for 30 years I have way too much stuff! Cleaning the closets is of no avail no matter how neatly I sort and organize. There just isn’t enough room for everything I have and how could I ever use it all? Recently I’ve been buying supplies to paint and collage on canvas. I just know if I keep trying I’ll finally be pleased with something I create. I’ve cleared out a space in a guest bedroom for a painting corner, but first I have to get all those things sorted and back in the closet so there is room to paint.

paint corner

Paint on Canvas Corner

Lesley Riley suggested I offer “surprise grab boxes” to you. As I clean out and organize I am filling medium and large flat rate priority boxes with all sorts of treasures I’ve been gathering and stashing away for years. I’ve tried just about every craft imaginable so my stash consists of fabric of all types and textures, books, patterns, sewing notions, threads, old photos, fabric, fabric, and fabric, lace old and new, papers, ribbons, trims, shells, trinkets, beads, buttons, found objects, costume jewelry, ephemera, yarns, quilt blocks vintage and new, patchwork started, cut squares of fabric, etc. The list goes on and on and I continue to find treasures long forgotten. Some boxes were moved here seven years ago and I’m just now opening them.

boxes on floor

Boxes From Closet

I’d love to send a box of fun to you so all these treats can find new life. I’ll be doing this for the next week. If the interest is great enough and I still have cleaning and clearing to do, I will continue. I really do want to be able to use my studio space and some of the things I loved when I purchased them, but it’s not possible with the disarray I’m in right now.

cutting table

Mess on Cutting Table

mess

Mess on Sewing Machine Cabinet

If you are interested in a surprise box this is how it will work. I’m charging $25 per medium cram-filled flat rate priority box which includes $11 postage and $35 for the large size flat rate priority box  which includes $15 postage. I have a few of the boxes ready to mail and I haven’t made a dent in all my sewing and crafting stuff.

boxes

Priority Boxes loaded and ready to mail

Please leave a comment here with your name and stating which size you wish to purchase. You can pay through my paypal account at judym@entouch.net or send a check in the mail. Once I’ve received payment I will mail your box.

large box

Large Box Full

box full

Medium Size Box Full

box contents

Medium Flat Rate Box contents

While cleaning out closets and my studio I came across a blog which featured photos of studios. I went to Mamie Janes blog and was inspired by all the vintage shelves, boxes, and drawers she uses for storage and display in her studio. Check out her “Welcome to My Studio” post on July 14, 2011. I love all of her posts, but this one is of particular interest right now.

I am prone to clutter my living space with these kinds of things, but I tried not to use them all when we moved into this house. After seeing the “Where Bloggers Create” post I couldn’t help myself and went on a hunt in our garage. I found and dusted off shelves, printers trays, and little drawers to add to my studio. Now I have more places to put things.

shelf

Add Shelf from Garage

buttons

Jars of Buttons and Trinkets

We all would love to see pictures of your studio and how you organize it. Please share with us. And if you don’t have enough stuff to put in your studio, please let me be of assistance.

My next post will be another Play Date. Please come back for a visit then.

Until then keep stitching and enjoy life, Judy

Play Date #5 Drawstring Bag

May 2, 2012

It’s time to play again. So get your creative energy flowing and see what you can make from those “false start and reject” patchwork pieces.

5 bags

Five Patchwork Drawstring Bags

I have been sewing since I was six years old and have been collecting things since then, too. As the years went by my collecting became a challenge to find the best deal, the next new craft idea toys and tools, the antique quilt no one wanted…you get the idea. Among that collecting is a very large plastic tub containing every piece of patchwork I have ever created that did not get used in a project. Oh, and some of that patchwork someone else created and gave to me or I bought at a Quilt Guild Show. It seems other people are able to cast out their unused patchwork, but not I.

Use It Up

Use It Up

So let’s make something with that patchwork. What do you have? Get it all out. Sort through and find some things that look like they might work together in a color scheme. Here’s what I grouped together from technique samples when I taught wearables from my “Jacket Jazz” series. The color scheme components are purples and oranges.

Purple and orange

Purple and Orange Components

Let’s Get Started

1. Start with your biggest patchwork piece. This Continuous Bias patchwork piece measures 13″ X 15″. Do I want it larger? How about that piece of Machine Grid Smocking? It fits, so I stitch it right sides together with a 1/4″ seam allowance and press it away from the main patchwork piece. I trim all the edges straight and it now measures 15″ X 17″. That’s a good size.

Side One

Side One Complete

2. Let’s see if I can create that same size with the remaining bits and pieces of patchwork and manipulations. It’s time to pull-in the lining fabric. After a few auditions I like this Kaffe Fassett sunflower cotton print. What do you think? The lining is also the binding and casing at the top of the bag.

lining

Add the Lining Fabric

3. Let’s add strips on the side to make the Seminole Patchwork 15″ wide. Another strip of fabric above that will be the piece on which the lining will turn-on to the front. I don’t want the lining to cover the Seminole Patchwork. Again I stitch right sides together and press seam away from patchwork. The piece is now 6″ tall with another 11″ to go.

first row

First Row Complete

4. Let’s introduce the lining fabric before adding another row of patchwork pieces. I cut it one and a half inches wide and stitch and flip that strip. Now there are 10″ to go for Side Two.

5. What’s next? What’s left? Let’s square-up some of those odd pieces. Now I sew 3 of them together and get a 15″ wide strip. Just what I need. I sew right sides together with larger piece, press seam to one side, trim even and contemplate again.

Second Row Complete

Second Row Complete

6. Let’s add another rest stop with a 1″ wide lining strip before adding more patchwork. Now let’s see if we can make a wider strip with the rest of the fabric manipulations. Yes, with a little piecing and adding on to those strangely cut pieces I think we have a 15″ wide piece. So it’s stitch and flip and press again. I use a steam iron and do not miss this step as it’s very important for keeping your piece flat and even.

7. One more strip of lining fabric will complete the second side of the bag to match the size of the first side.

Side 2

Side Two Complete

Oh, dear there are a few pieces left from the purple and orange patchwork. They will go in my collage card making box. Waste not, want not.

leftovers

Leftover “Leftovers”

Time out…I need to make a collage greeting cardwith the left-over “left-overs.”

collage greeting card

Thank You Collage Greeting Card

Now it’s on to the lining and pockets.

1. Place the patchwork pieces right sides together. Trim if they aren’t the same size. Use a gridded mat to make sure all four sides are even. Place on top of lining fabric which is right sides together. Cut lining 2″ taller than the patchwork.

2. Make pockets from left-over lining fabric. They can be any size you like. Very often the amount of fabric I have left from the lining dictates the size of the pockets I make. Cut two pieces for each pocket you make. Sew pocket pieces right sides together using a 1/4″ seam allowance. Leave an opening for turning. Clip corners. Turn right side out. Press and turn the raw edge in. Center and pin pocket to right side of one of the lining pieces 4″ from top edge. Leaving top open stitch on 2 sides and bottom close to edge. Add a second pocket to the other side of the lining. If you prefer, stitch a seam in the middle of the pocket to make two smaller pockets.

3. Place lining right sides together with all edges even. Put patchwork right sides together and layered on top of the lining 2″ from top of lining. Other three edges should be even. Pin all 4 layers together. Stitch two sides and bottom together with a 3/8″ seam allowance. Leave 3/4″ free of stitching above patchwork on the lining.

leave open

Leave Seam Open

4. Turn right sides out bringing the patchwork fronts to the outside. Lining will be inside bag with 2″ extending above patchwork bag. Fold lining/casing in half onto itself.

fold casing

Fold Casing in Half

5. Fold casing down onto bag. Pin to bag. Top stitch casing through all layers. The 3/4″ on the lining that was left unstitched is where the ribbon will be inserted to make the drawstrings.

6. Choose ribbon or cording twice the width of the bag plus 4″. You need this length two times.

ribbons

Ribbons for Casing

7. Using the opening on one side of casing run ribbon through with a bodkin or safety-pin. Leave tail outside of casing on one end. Run ribbon all the way back to where you started. Pull out small amount. Hold two ends together and tie ends in a knot. Pull tightly so knot doesn’t come out.

knot

Knot in Ribbon

8. Do the same with the second ribbon starting on the opposite casing side. Put one knotted ribbon in each hand and pull. The bag closes tightly.

drawstrings

Drawstrings Pulled Tight

The drawstring bag is complete with lining and pockets and ready to fill.

lining

Lining and Pockets

Now that was simple. Want to see a few more ideas? Here are a few others I have made. Go to my etsy shop to see details for each of them.

wedge

Wonder Wedge Drawstring Bag

rayon bag

Rayon Strip Pieced Drawstring Bag

blue bag

Stripped Piece Drawstring Bag

Chinese bag

China Red and Green Bag

I hope you will make a Drawstring Bag from your left-over patchwork pieces. We all would love to see your creation. If you have any questions on the directions I have given you here, don’t hesitate to ask. I’d love to help.

So here’s another challenge. This time there is no prize or deadline. It’s just a simple challenge for you to use some of your left-over patchwork to make a drawstring bag. Then send a picture to me so I can post it on this blog.

Friday I will announce the winner of the little sewing drawer full of vintage lace. Stay tuned and keep stitching. Judy

What’s Up?

April 29, 2012

Life has been busy around here with a little of this and a lot of that.

The International Spring Quilt Festival in Cincinnati, April 12-15, has come and gone. It was a delightful show with entertaining Special Exhibits, much shopping with the exhibitors, and fun learning in the education department.

show floor

Cincinnati Show Floor

I loved shopping with Charmography where I chose the charms, and Robin put them together for me to make a dazzling three strand necklace full of glitter and favorite things. She and her husband were exhibitors at all three of our Quilt Festivals last year, and I didn’t get time to visit their booth or they were so busy I couldn’t get my turn. I was determined to enjoy a visit or two at this show and I’m glad I did. I love wearing my necklace, and every time I do I get lots and lots of compliments. Thank you Robin. Hope to see you at the Long Beach Quilt Festival.

Charmography

Charmography Robin and Robin

The quilts in Special Exhibits flowed so beautifully in their setting this year. I took several pictures, but after looking at the ones Tom Russell posted on his blog I decided to guide you there for a much better view. Tom knows how to capture the most intricate detail with his “Magic Camera.” Check-out “Cinn City: 2012 International Quilt Festival Show” after you go to his blog.

The Special Exhibits department is led by Carmen Valls and Amanda Schlatre with a great team of helpers, and they do a smashing job getting those quilts selected, hung, and presented to all the viewers.

Carmen Valls

Carmen Valls Special Exhibits

Amanda Schlatre

Amanda Schlatre Special Exhibits

The Education Department has been my responsibility for more than 30 years. We have a great team led by Kim, Jill, and Marcia who come to all 5 of our shows. Some shows we have as few as 2 extra helpers, but for our long-standing Quilt Festival in Houston we need 17 extra helpers to get through the 6+ days of classes taking place morning, noon, and night.

Education Team

Quilts, Inc. Cincinnati Education Team

Among the outstanding teachers at Cincinnati Quilt Festival 2012, we introduced Heather Thomas to our staff for the first time. Heather is an artist, designer, instructor, and author in Mixed Media. I had the privilege of taking her full-day Mixed Media Collage Techniques class. She is a gifted teacher with an understandable art theory approach to guide her successful students. I continued to follow her classes throughout the 4 days in bits and pieces. What a treat to have her among us. I guarantee you if you select one or more of her classes at one of our other shows, you will be glad you did.

Heather Thomas

Heather Thomas teaching

I came home from the Cincinnati Quilt Festival on a Monday evening to an order from the Texas Quilt Museum for 20 more Treasure Boxes and 20 more Collage Greeting Cards. I love making both of those items, so it was exhilarating to have a reason to be back in my studio the minute I walked into the house again. I was able to complete 15 boxes and 15 cards by last Friday delivery. I need to collect more small boxes to finish the Treasure Box order, but I’m itching to get back in my studio to complete the other collage cards.

Treasure Boxes

Treasure Boxes full of things for collage making

Friends and Birthday Greetings

Friends and Birthday Greetings

Happy Birthday

Congratulations and Happy Birthday

Miss You

Miss You

Congratulations and Travel

Congratulations and Travel

Get Radical and Smile

Get Radical and Smile

Friends and Wish You Were Here

Friends and Wish You Were Here

Seriously?

You've Got Talent collage card

Also when I arrived home, I sent the last of 15 Vintage Lace Challenge Packets requested. If you received one of the packets, it’s time to get a picture to me as Tuesday, May 1, is your deadline. On Friday, May 5, I will post the winner in my blog. To date, I have received two lovely photos of your completed challenges. It’s fun to recognize the laces I sent to you. I’m looking for a lucky 13 more photos as someone will be the winner of the little wooden sewing drawer full of vintage laces.

Pillow

My Grandmother by Debra Bentley

Wilma Hart for my sister

For My Sister by Wilma Hart 14" X 18"

Do you have a hard time throwing out fabric you have cut and stitched, but then didn’t use? When friends and family find out you are a quilter, do they give you their cast offs or those of another family member? I can’t part with those things, and I always say yes to them. I can’t ever throw out something I used for a class sample or strips, squares or triangles that never made it into a project. I grew-up with the quote, “Use it up. Wear it out. Make it do. Or do without.”

If you have this same malady, I  have another challenge for you.  You will receive instructions for making something simple and useful. There will not be a prize, but I would love to post your results.  So join me again next Wednesday when we will be together for Play Date #5.

Use It Up

Use It Up

Until then keep stitching. Hugs, Judy

Play Date #2 Heart Pillow

January 15, 2012

Each of the holidays throughout the year is special to me for one reason or another. I decorate our home for each of these holidays or seasons, and many of the decorations are things I have created over the years. This past week I decorated for Valentine’s Day so my husband and I and any guests or family who visit can enjoy the decorations, too. In a later blog, I will show you little Valentine vignettes, but today I want to show you how to make another kind of Valentine.

The instructions for how to make this Heart Pillow are much the same as those I showed you in Play Date #1 on making Valentine Cards. You will gather some of the same supplies. My studio work table is covered with things to use for making both Valentine Cards and Heart Pillows. The pillow starts with a batting foundation, and the card starts with a paper foundation. Today let’s make the pillow.

Embellished heart

Embellished Hanging Heart

Here’s a list of things you will need: batting (I use Warm and Natural because of its firmness.), stuffing, ribbon, fabric scraps, lace, photos, sayings/quotes, buttons, beads, trinkets, patchwork pieces, mixed media samples, ephemera, glue stick, basic sewing supplies and sewing machine.

Are you ready? Let’s get started:

  1. Make a heart shape pattern. The largest heart pattern I use starts with a 10″ square of paper. Fold a square of paper in half and cut half of a heart. Open. If you are pleased with the shape and size, cut a foundation using this pattern from batting.

    batting foundation

    Cut heart pattern from batting

  2. You can cover the entire foundation with one piece of painted fabric, vintage embroidery, tea towel or quilt piece, etc.  Or, you can use bits and pieces of a combination of fabrics to patchwork the foundation. If you choose the patchwork method, start by pinning a piece of fabric right side up in the center of the heart foundation. With right sides together, stitch and flip fabric pieces out from the center until you have covered the foundation heart shape. Stitch the outside close to the edge and trim fabric even with the foundation heart.
  3. Embellish the patchwork with ribbons and laces or other trim. Add the photo, quote, and any other elements you have gathered to create an interesting and pleasing design. Pin and/or use a tiny amount of glue stick to hold the objects in place until you have stitched them to the covered foundation. When you are pleased with your design, straight stitch and/or zig zag the elements to the fabric covered foundation. Embellish further with machine or hand stitching or trinkets, buttons, beads, etc.

    Covered foundation

    Cover foundation with fabric and embellishments

  4. Cut a backing fabric using the finished heart design as a pattern. It’s possible your original heart may have shrunk slightly with the stitching and embellishing.
  5. Cut a ribbon for hanging the heart approximately 12″ long. Pin right sides together to the very top of the patchwork heart. Pin old or new lace straight edge to the outside edge of the heart, right sides together. Some lace needs to be gathered to hang nicely while other lace, usually hand crochet, needs only a slight amount of gathering to the heart front. Stitch lace and ribbon to the heart.

    lace and ribbon attached

    Pin ribbon and lace right sides together to pillow edge

  6. Pin backing heart shape right sides together with embellished heart. Stitch leaving an opening on one side large enough for you to put your hand in to stuff it. Clip top center and curves to stitching. Turn right side out. Tug gently on ribbon and lace to get the edges out. Fill  heart with stuffing and potpourri, if you like, until firm. Pin and stitch opening closed.
  7. If you want to decorate the pillow further with keys, small bottles, buttons, flowers, stickers, etc. use a glue gun to adhere to outside of heart.

    Be Mine finished

    Be Mine Heart Pillow Complete

  8. Enjoy hanging in your home, or give away to someone special.

You can see other samples of these heart pillows in my etsy shop. Just click the etsy link on the right side of this post to go there. I will have these heart pillows, Valentines and some heart designs on canvas at my nephew’s art party and sale on February 4th. If you are interested in attending, let me know and I’ll email you an invitation.

It’s been fun showing you another way I use lots of my embellishments. I hope you will express your creativity and make some of these memorable, treasured greetings for youself or someone special. Please let me hear from you and send pictures to my email address. I’d love to show them on my blog before the end of February. Happy crafting until we meet again.

Bright heart

Bright Pink Heart from paper and fabric


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